American Civil War
Timeline OTL
Date April 12, 1861 to May 26, 1865
Location The United States
Result Union victory; Defeat of the Confederacy, reunification of the United States, slavery abolished in the United States
34Stars.jpg United States CSA.jpg Confederate States
Commanders and leaders
Abraham Lincoln
Andrew Johnson
Ulysses S. Grant
William Sherman
George McClellan
numerous others
Jefferson Davis
Robert E. Lee
Thomas Jackson
Albert Sidney Johnston
numerous others

The American Civil War (1861–1865) was a separatist conflict between the United States Federal government (the "Union") and eleven Southern slave states that declared their secession and formed the Confederate States of America, led by President Jefferson Davis. The Union, led by President Abraham Lincoln and the Republican Party, opposed the expansion of slavery and rejected any right of secession. Fighting commenced on April 12, 1861, when Confederate forces attacked a Federal military installation at Fort Sumter in South Carolina.

During the first year, the Union asserted control of the border states and established a naval blockade as both sides raised large armies. In 1862 large, bloody battles began, causing massive casualties as a result of new weapons and old battlefield tactics. In September 1862, Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation made the freeing of the slaves a war goal, despite opposition from northern Copperheads who tolerated secession and slavery. Emancipation ensured that Britain and France would not intervene to help the Confederacy. In addition, the goal also allowed the Union to recruit African-Americans for reinforcements, a resource that the Confederacy did not dare exploit until it was too late. War Democrats reluctantly accepted emancipation as part of the total war needed to save the Union. In the East, Robert E. Lee rolled up a series of Confederate victories over the Army of the Potomac, but his best general, "Stonewall" Thomas Jackson, was killed at the Battle of Chancellorsville in May 1863. Lee's invasion of the North was repulsed at the Battle of Gettysburg in Pennsylvania in July 1863; he barely managed to escape back to Virginia. In the West, the U.S. Navy captured the port of New Orleans in 1862, and Ulysses S. Grant seized control of the Mississippi River by capturing Vicksburg, Mississippi in July 1863, thus splitting the Confederacy in two.

By 1864, long-term Union advantages in geography, manpower, industry, finance, political organization and transportation were overwhelming the Confederacy. Grant fought a number of bloody battles with Lee in Virginia in the summer of 1864. Lee won most of the battles in a tactical sense but on the whole lost strategically, as he could not replace his casualties and was forced to retreat into trenches around his capital, Richmond, Virginia. Meanwhile, William Sherman captured Atlanta, Georgia. Sherman's March to the Sea destroyed a hundred-mile-wide swath of Georgia. In 1865, the Confederacy collapsed after Lee surrendered to Grant at Appomattox Court House; all slaves in the Confederacy were freed by the Emancipation Proclamation. Slaves outside Confederate control were freed by state action or by the 13th Amendment to the United States Constitution in the same year.

The full restoration of the Union was the work of a highly contentious postwar era known as Reconstruction. The war produced about 970,000 casualties (3% of the population), including approximately 620,000 soldier deaths, which two-thirds by disease. The causes of the war, the reasons for its outcome, and even the name of the war itself are subjects of lingering controversy even today. The main results of the war were the restoration and strengthening of the Union, and the end of slavery in the United States.

Note: The above description pertains to the American Civil War as it unfolded in OTL, as well as all timelines with a POD after 1865.

American Civil War in Crosstime Traffic[]

Crosstime Traffic was aware of several alternates in which the Confederate States had won the American Civil War and still existed in the 2090s.

American Civil War in The Disunited States of America[]

In one alternate, the United States dissolved into multiple nation-states in the early 1800s, precluding any need for the American Civil War. However, small wars between a few states were common over the next few centuries, and the states fought each other in the North American theater of the equivalent of World War I.

Due to the lack of the Civil War, slavery was gradually abolished on a state-by-state basis, often with negative consequences for the future of race relations. One immediately obvious geographical effect of a Civil-War-less past, was that the Commonwealth of Virginia retained West Virginia as part of its territory. An important Crosstime Traffic base was located in that region.

American Civil War in Days of Infamy[]

Even 77 years after its end, the American Civil War was still a sore topic in the US, especially in the former Confederate States who referred to it as "The War Between the States", or “The War of Damnyankee Aggression”. Although many southerners preferred not to talk about the war, they still liked to remember the fight they put up. USMC Sergeant Les Dillon observed this when he met Captain Braxton Bradford.

American Civil War in The Guns of the South[]

In the early 21st century, members of South Africa's Afrikaner Weerstandsbeweging determined that history would have progressed in a way more to their liking, had the Confederate States won the American Civil War. With stolen technology, they time-traveled from 2014 to 1864 to help the CSA win the Second American Revolution. These men, calling themselves America Will Break, revealed their origins to select members of the Confederate high command, and for this purpose concocted a half-accurate distortion of the history of their world. Eventually, a pilfered book told the real story of the American Civil War, and its difference from the AWB cover story showed the true colors of "men from Rivington." In response, the AWB attacked the Confederacy, to their own ruin. The Confederate government confiscated the AWB library, and used its knowledge to subvert the AWB's long-term goal of white supremacy over the globe.

See also Second American Revolution

American Civil War in "The Last Reunion"[]

The last surviving American Civil War veterans from the vanquished South held periodic reunions in the 20th century. One veteran, John Houston Thorpe, died at such a gathering in Richmond, Virginia in 1932. His ghost joined those of the men who died in battle during the Civil War, re-enacting various battles in a far more congenial manner.

American Civil War in "Lee at the Alamo"[]

The American Civil War began in February 1861 when United States Army Lt. Colonel Robert E. Lee defended the Union garrison at the Alamo from Texas Militia and Confederate forces led by Benjamin McCulloch. The Second Battle of the Alamo ended in defeat for the Union, but made a hero out of Lee. Lee had been unsure which side he would support in the coming war, but these events convinced him to stay with the Union, on certain conditions. In April, President Lincoln, whose term had begun while the Alamo siege continued, agreed to Lee's conditions, and transferred Lee to the western theater to fight against Confederates again.

Literary comment[]

This story only tells of the very beginning of its timeline's Civil War. The full course and ultimate outcome remain unknown.

American Civil War in "Must and Shall"[]

The Great Rebellion ended in defeat for the Confederacy. The Union, led by President Hannibal Hamlin after Abraham Lincoln was killed during the war, imposed a retribution so harsh that the South remained perpetually restive even into the 1940s. In effect, though destroyed as an actual political entity, the Confederate States continued to claim the allegiance of white Southerners, and the war failed in its main aim: to make the United States a single nation again.

American Civil War in Worldwar[]

Following the American Civil War (known in the South as the War Between the States, or the States' War), no prolonged wars were fought in the United States until 1942, when the Race Invasion of Tosev 3 began. Many Americans thought back to this precedent and what it meant for their culture. Southern soldiers, such as Mutt Daniels of Mississippi and Rance Auerbach of Texas, were brought up in regions that had suffered defeat in their grandfathers' time, and were determined by a fighting spirit that exceeded that of their Northern compatriots, in their own minds at least. Glen Johnson, whose ancestors fought in the Union Army, told Mickey Flynn, whose ancestors had also been in that service, that Southerners talked about the Civil War as if it ended yesterday.

During the presidential campaign of 1964, ex-Shiplord Straha asked his driver Gordon what would happen if a large portion of the US populace refused to accept the elected candidate. Gordon replied that the Civil War, which began over such a problem, had been such a horrific cautionary tale that the same movement was unlikely to ever be tried again.

See also[]